persistent

play
adjective per·sis·tent \ pər-ˈsi-stənt , -ˈzi- \

Definition of persistent

1 :existing for a long or longer than usual time or continuously: such as
a :retained beyond the usual period
  • a persistent leaf
b :continuing without change in function or structure
  • persistent gills
c :effective in the open for an appreciable time usually through slow volatilizing
  • mustard gas is persistent
d :degraded only slowly by the environment
  • persistent pesticides
e :remaining infective for a relatively long time in a vector after an initial period of incubation
  • persistent viruses
2 a :continuing or inclined to persist in a course
b :continuing to exist despite interference or treatment
  • a persistent cough
  • has been in a persistent vegetative state for two years

persistently

adverb

Examples of persistent in a Sentence

  1. Contrary to persistent myth, Hoover was an activist. —Steve ForbesForbes30 June 2008
  2. The high-water mark of such truckling might be the publication of the Cato Institute report "America's Record Trade Deficit: A Symbol of Strength." Freedom had become slavery; persistent deficits had become economic power. —Eric JanszenHarper'sFebruary 2008
  3. The silence started from your end just about the time you said good-bye to dear St. Elizabeth and it has been constant and persistent ever since. —Archibald Macleishletter11 July 1959
  4. We were nagged by a persistent salesman.

  5. He is one of the government's most persistent critics.

  6. She has been persistent in pursuing the job.

  7. He has been fighting a persistent cold.

  8. Flooding has been a persistent problem in the area this year.

  9. Persistent rumors that the business is for sale have alarmed the staff.

Recent Examples of persistent from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'persistent.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of persistent

Latin persistent-, persistens, present participle of persistere — see persist



PERSISTENT Defined for English Language Learners

persistent

play
adjective

Definition of persistent for English Language Learners

  • : continuing to do something or to try to do something even though it is difficult or other people want you to stop

  • : continuing beyond the usual, expected, or normal time : not stopping or going away


PERSISTENT Defined for Kids

persistent

play
adjective per·sist·ent \ pər-ˈsi-stənt \

Definition of persistent for Students

:continuing to act or exist longer than usual
  • a persistent cold

persistently

adverb

Medical Dictionary

persistent

play
adjective per·sis·tent \ -tənt \

medical Definition of persistent

1 :existing or continuing for a long time: as
a :effective in the open for an appreciable time usually through slow volatilizing
  • mustard gas is persistent
b :degraded only slowly by the environment
  • persistent pesticides
c :remaining infective for a relatively long time in a vector after an initial period of incubation
  • persistent viruses
2 :continuing to exist despite interference or treatment
  • a persistent cough
  • has been in a persistent vegetative state for two years


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